“Happily Ever After”

Desmond-centric episodes have a knack for being game changers for Lost and putting the entire series in a new context.  “Flashes Before Your Eyes” introduced the issue of temporal paradoxes and confronted the matter of fate vs. free will head-on.  “The Constant” dealt with time-traveling and consciousness-jumping and foreshadowed the island’s own unstuck in time journeys.  If the middle of Lost’s sixth season needed anything, it was a Desmond episode.  With many fans fretting over the purpose of the Sideways World, it should have been obvious that Desmond would be the vessel to make the connection between the Island and the Sideways realities.  Before “Happily Ever After,” it still seemed possible that the producers had made the insane decision to mess around with the fans with a pointless plot device.  Afterwards, it still was not yet clear what the Sideways world was, but it was now clear that it was something.  The post-car crash moments were essential in this matter.  When Charlie put his hand on the window, I knew that Desmond was going to have a “Not Penny’s Boat” flash, and then it happened, and I still threw my hands back in shock (and hit one of them pretty hard on the couch).  The scene with Desmond and Penny in the stadium at the end could have come off as serial killer confronts jogger-style creepy, but we accepted it, because Henry Ian Cusick and Sonya Walger have had the most chemistry of any of the Lost couples.

Next up: How I Met Your Mother